His Beatitude Met Onuphry addresses "Faithful" congress participants
People remain faithful to the UOC because the Church is the Mother who cannot be betrayed, His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry wrote in his address.
His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry addressed the participants of the congress of the communities of the seized churches of the UOC "The Faithful", held on February 22 at the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra and stated that "despite all kinds of obstacles and persecution, people remain faithful to God and the true Church and called on not to fear, reports the UOC Information and Educational Department.
Metropolitan Onuphry said that in recent years the UOC has faced such serious trials as "the seizure of churches, illegal re-registration of parishes under the jurisdiction of another religious organization, physical violence against the believers, intimidation and blackmail of their families" but people remain faithful to God because the Church has become home for them.
“What is their strength and firmness of position? And why is it so necessary to keep to the true Church? First, it is worth remembering that every believer has gone their own way to faith. And the Holy Church accepted in Her arms all of us, so different and weak. She, like a caring Mother, always cares and supports us, despite our daily sins and mistakes, heals our spiritual and bodily wounds, helping us in the work of salvation,” said the head of the UOC.
“Only in the true Church are we able to meet God and receive His grace. It is this aspiration that is the key to the firm position of our believers – neither politics, nor geopolitics, nor some kind of ideology, but exclusively the desire to be faithful to the Lord," added His Beatitude.
His Beatitude emphasized that today when various forces are pushing believers to make a deal with their conscience, to violate laws and canons, to maintain a schism, it is worth asking oneself only one question – is it pleasing to God – everything immediately falls into place.
“Is God's grace there where unrighteousness, violence and aggression toward one's neighbours reign? Frank answers to these questions not only put everything in its place but also unambiguously explain why believers, against the background of provocative statements about a new "wave" of the so-called transfers, continue to remain faithful to the Lord and His Holy Church,” said His Beatitude.
His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry thanked all the congress participants and urged them to work for the glory of the Church, despite all the trials.
“It is impossible to find exhaustive words to convey to you the fullness of our gratitude for your standing in the faith. We pray with all our hearts to God to support and protect you on this difficult path. Difficult, but full of great hope. After all, the Lord told us: " Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell" (Matthew 10:28). If we are with God, if we continue to remain faithful to Him, then even the greatest threats and trials will not become an obstacle on the path to salvation,” added the Primate of the UOC.
As previously reported, a congress of the believers from the seized churches began in the Lavra.